I think you’ll agree, we have a directional problem 

Remember your first day of classes at university? You arrive on campus with your bag brimming with materials, excited for a fresh start. Your first class of the day is in the business building, room A311. When you enter the front door, you have no idea which way to turn. Students and administrators are rushing about you on their own way to their own destinations. You hesitantly turn down one hallway and find yourself in front of room D110. Does the D denote a wing of the building? Are you looking for a room on the first floor since you’re in an A or the third floor since it’s room 311? What does it all mean? Where are you supposed to go? The panic starts to rise as the clock ticks. 

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Perhaps there is no more iconic picture of the modern office than of the wide open space, rows of desks arranged together, surrounded by fashionable Scandinavian furniture, hordes of millennials banging away at their keyboards wearing their high-end headphones. Large windows and all white everything keep the space light, airy, and up to the expected aesthetics of modern design. Maybe throw some plants in for good measure. While we’re at it, sprinkle in a couple well-behaved dogs, a work BFF, and a dozen flannel shirts and VOILA! You have the modern open office space. 

As companies compete for the most talented employees, they have realized that it’s more important than ever for the physical office to reflect the modern culture of the company itself. That means the dreaded cubicle farm is a thing of the past. Companies are breaking down walls and opening doors in an attempt to foster conversation and creativity, enhance relationships, and promote transparency. 

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The modern workplace of today bears little resemblance to the modern workplace of 50 years ago. Just think about the mid-day booze-swilling, male-dominated, Mad Man-era office setting compared to today’s increasingly diverse, kombucha-sipping, dog-friendly open spaces. Some changes have evolved slowly like workplace diversity and others have cropped up seemingly overnight like gourmet coffee bars and company kick ball leagues. 

We’ve written a lot about the environment of today’s modern workplace, but as you strive to keep your company attractive and competitive today, it’s critical to plan for what’s going to make it shine in the future. The last thing you want to do is invest in a full-scale office remodel, only to find what you consider modern today is outdated thinking five years from now. Making those predictions may seem like an exercise in futility which office worker in the 1970s would dream that ping-pong tables would replace conference room tables and cubicles would relegated to the depths of office hell? That’s why we’ve put together a guide for planning for the office of the future. 

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Planning the perfect meeting is so much more than putting together a compelling PowerPoint presentation. Much of a meeting’s success has to do with not only the flow of the presentation itself, but also the care you put into creating a welcoming environment conducive to productivity for all of those involved. A professional mentor once told me that he never schedules meetings that would last longer than it takes a butt to fall asleep in a seat. I love that philosophy, but in today’s meeting-filled business world, it can often be unrealistic.  

The best way, then, to keep the room’s attention high is to provide ample comfort options, besides the comfort level of the chairs themselves, of course. When it comes to keeping productivity high in lengthy meetings, there are two magic words you need to remember: “food” and “coffee.”  

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As a CIO, CTO, or Director of IT, balancing your company’s immediate needs with its long-term growth is paramount to success, but one of business’s greatest challenges. Complicated questions arise, such as whether you should invest aggressively in long-term initiatives or take a less expensive and more conservative approaches. 

A common piece of this puzzle is the “build versus buy” question that many companies face when addressing their long-term software needs. In other words, does an out-of-the-box solution address all of your company’s unique needs, or do you need a customized solution that is designed specifically for your organization?  

The Curse of the One-Hour Meeting 

There’s no shortage of jokes about the futility of the average business meeting. Comic strips lament it. Television shows highlight its honor in the hierarchy of company doldrums. It’s possible there is a level of Dante’s Inferno devoted solely to business meetings. 

You meet to share ideas, make some progress, gain some results, move forward, collaborate, learn, improve, grow. This is a reason that people end up in a ton of meetings every week in a professional context. It's simply the way modern organizations work these days. Therefore, meetings are an integral part of business life. Your workforce’s meetings are at the heart of your organization. They are where employees get together to collaborate and ultimately drive your company forward, possibly making them one of the most important aspects of your office environment.

In the modern days, with the help of vastly evolving technological development, people build information systems (IS) to ease and assist in execution of various daily tasks. It is not a secret that AskCody contributes to the pool of such information systems, and we are fierce in battling the challenges of everyday employee, manager, receptionist and many other crucial parts of the living and breathing organization. This battle is not easy and we would like to shed a light over some of these issues that we challenge ourselves to overcome.